Crafting has always been a great way to express yourself and create unique handmade products. While for most people it remains just a hobby, some take it to a new level by turning their creative talent into an online business. Fortunately, there’s a big interest in handmade goods online.
In this guide, discover how to sell crafts online and build a unique brand identity, places to sell your handmade items, and how to market your new business.
- Profitable niches in the craft space include jewelry, printables, home decor, personal care, and fabric crafts.
- When you’re ready to start selling, consider international vs. local markets, local online craft platforms, or creating your own website.
- You may be tempted to sell on a marketplace like Etsy, but you’ll be charged transaction fees and the competition is tough.
- WooCommerce is a free plugin for WordPress websites to turn them into online stores.
5 most profitable crafts to sell online
Crafting includes a wide variety of creative activities, and the products you can make can appeal to different audiences. Unfortunately, not all types of crafts have high-demand levels and profit margins.
Take a look at the five most profitable crafts to sell online based on the studies conducted to evaluate the success of craft businesses on major marketplaces.
Jewelry remains the most profitable craft business according to different studies conducted by the biggest marketplaces. Jewelry products are always in high demand, whether they are made from inexpensive supplies or high-end metals, like gold or silver. People love personalized jewelry, and there are many different styles to choose from.
Printables and digital products
Selling printables and digital products in all forms has never been more popular. Calendars, planners, cards, and invites — all of these can be sold online both in digital and printable form.
The main benefit of making digital products is that you can sell them an unlimited number of times without having to recreate them for every customer.
Home decor includes a number of different products you can make from all kinds of materials. Clay, wood, paper, or fabric — there are millions of ideas to bring to life to create unique decor items for any interior design style.
For example, making candles that are sometimes considered part of home decor can have huge popularity, and it can be one of the most profitable crafts.
The personal care products industry is considered one of the fastest growing. Many people have started giving preference to handmade products when buying soaps, scrubs, bath bombs, lotions, and lip balms. Small manufacturers usually focus on offering organic cosmetics made from natural ingredients.
Fabric crafts and accessories
Handmade products made of fabric, including a wide variety of accessories, are on the rise and can bring high income. For example, pillows, pillow covers, and tote bags are some of the most popular and profitable craft items. Hair bows have also been a trend for a long time, so you can be sure fabric crafts will never run out of the market.
Find your craft market niche
The first step to understanding how to sell your crafts online, and how you can turn your hobby into a source of income, is determining what you would like to make and who your potential customers are.
Handmade items are a specific kind of product, and not all people are willing to pay extra to give preference to small manufacturers. The vast majority of craft businesses work in a niche market, which is defined by its own specific set of needs.
Finding a strong market niche can help you differentiate yourself from the competition and grow your business in the long term by having a well-defined and committed customer base. Find a gap in the market. Or, in other words, identify what unmet needs exist in the chosen market and how you can satisfy those needs.
Focus on something that you can do well and are passionate about and turn it into a unique market offering that will appeal to a specific customer group.
Choose a business name
Choose a brand name that appeals to your target market and communicates your mission. Ideally, your business name should be easy to remember and describe what kinds of products you offer.
Set up a creative workspace for your business
If you are thinking about how to sell crafts online, you might already have a hobby that takes up time and energy. But turning it into a business will bring a lot of changes, including the number of products made. So, it is important to create a workspace that works for you.
Working from home may be the best option, especially when you are just getting started. Your workspace needs to be inspiring and creative while staying multifunctional and well-organized. Make sure that you have all the tools and materials you need and a lot of storage space.
Choose where to sell your homemade crafts
Choosing where to sell your crafts might be one of the most important things to consider to reach your audience and promote your brand. There are two main options — become a seller on a marketplace or sell on your own website.
International and local markets
Selling internationally requires a lot more time and effort than selling locally and can create many new challenges for business owners. Sorting payment options that could address the diverse preferences of customers around the world and getting to know the international shipping options available are just some of the things you need to consider before selling internationally.
Marketplaces vs. your own store
Marketplaces can help your craft business get off the ground by helping expose your products to the global market. You can grow your customer base and promote your brand without having to make huge investments. As a new seller, you may notice that marketplaces can help you set up a huge part of all business processes, including payment processing, logistics, and inventory management.
As your business grows, you can make a transition to your own online store or use a hybrid approach to expand your reach. Although, in the initial stages, it may seem like it introduces additional costs and difficulties that may outweigh the fees marketplaces charge, owning an ecommerce website is absolutely essential to promote your brand and build a reputation.
Having your own ecommerce store while listing your products on popular marketplaces substantially increases your reach and helps you build customer trust and loyalty. Studies have shown that people are much more likely to purchase something from a seller that operates their own website, so investing in hosting from the very start might be worth it.
Where to sell your crafts online if you are a new business owner
With the rising popularity of handmade products, there are a lot of options available to sell crafts online.
There are a lot of local online craft platforms available to you depending on the region. Choosing smaller marketplaces that focus on craft products can be highly beneficial as they are less saturated and can help your craft business gain more recognition on the local market.
At the same time, such marketplaces are less known to customers, which is important to keep in mind. An example of a local marketplace can be Folksy, the biggest UK online craft platform.
Online marketplaces like Etsy
Etsy is a marketplace dedicated to selling handmade products, so it is not surprising that you may consider it. Although selling on Etsy gives you an opportunity to present your products to millions of customers, the competition is tough.
Additionally, there are multiple types of fees, including listing and transaction fees. Etsy charges a 6.5 percent transaction fee — and if you use their Etsy Payments system, you’re charged an additional 3 percent more for processing fees.
Your own online store
You can avoid transaction fees found on marketplaces like Etsy by selling on your own online store. Having your own online store makes your brand look professional and trustworthy — and it can help with sales too.
It may sound daunting to create your own online store if you’re not a web developer, but platforms like WooCommerce make it simple and accessible.
WooCommerce is actually a free plugin for WordPress websites. It turns websites into an online store. The benefit of using WordPress is that it’s open source, so you’re not locked into a platform like Shopify (which comes with its own transaction fees).
There are even some big brands that use WooCommerce for their online stores.
Pricing and marketing strategy to sell craft items online
Deciding on an approach to pricing and developing a strong marketing strategy are essential when getting your business online. Once you have gained a good understanding of what your target market is, and what needs your products can satisfy, it should be much easier to decide how to price your crafts and where to promote them.
How to price your crafts
A lot of factors need to be considered when choosing the right pricing strategy for your crafts business, but the approach remains the same for all entrepreneurs. A good starting point is to calculate your production costs that reflect all expenses associated with running your business.
Think of your crafts and the chosen market niche. Are you a luxury brand aimed at people who would pay a premium to get unique items that reflect their status? Or you would like to penetrate the market fast by offering your crafts for lower prices while maintaining the best quality?
Crafting leaves a great amount of freedom to the business owner as the products are unique and often are aimed at higher-income customer groups. It is important to remember that handmade products are generally priced higher than what can be found in large supermarket chains.
Where and how to promote your handmade products
Getting first customers and increasing your customer base might be one of the most challenging aspects of selling crafts online. These tips will help you promote your handmade crafts online and reach a broader audience.
Photography tips for selling crafts online
Strategic product photography is essential for selling your crafts online. High-quality photos are an investment in your craft business. They not only grab attention but also build trust and confidence in your brand, ultimately leading to more sales and happy customers.
Here are some key tips to make your creations shine:
- Good lighting: Ditch the harsh flash and embrace natural light. Find a bright, airy spot near a window with diffused sunlight. If artificial light is needed, opt for daylight bulbs for a natural color balance.
- Provide multiple looks: Capture different angles and close-ups that showcase the craftsmanship, intricate details, and textures of your work.
- Background basics: Keep it clean and clutter-free. Use a plain white or lightly colored backdrop to make your crafts pop.
- Model your pieces: For wearable items like jewelry or clothing, consider using a model to showcase how your creations look. This helps buyers visualize themselves in your pieces.
Utilizing social media for selling crafts online
Social media is a great way to connect with your customers. Finding the right platform can help you reach the target audience easier and adjust your content to the existing trends. Using visual content, like photos and videos, is the best way to showcase your crafts and allow your customers to learn more about the design and product creation.
Working with influencers
Influencer marketing is a great way to build brand reputation and increase ecommerce sales. The best thing about this type of marketing is that sponsored content can easily blend in with the influencer’s usual content, making their recommendations more trustworthy and authentic. Modern influencers create trends, and your product might become the next thing everyone would like to have.
Power your crafting business with fully managed hosting
Crafting has opened new opportunities to use your creativity to create unique products and build a business selling them. Many people looking to turn their hobby into a successful business are wondering how to sell crafts online, and how to build a website and get it online.
Start selling online with WooCommerce, and power your online presence with fully managed WooCommerce hosting from Nexcess.
Nexcess will take care of all technical aspects of ecommerce hosting while you focus on the more important business tasks at hand. Get an enterprise-level technology stack and the best support in the industry — that is what Nexcess has to offer.
You can even check out our professional ecommerce website design services if you want a hassle-free option.
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